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US Speaker, Pelosi, Atiku frown at Trump’s travel ban placed on Nigerians 

President Donald Trump has included Nigeria into a six-country ban list due to failure to meet required security standard. 

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US House Speaker, Pelosi, Atiku, react to US travel ban on Nigerians, others 

Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House of Representatives for the United States, and former Presidential Candidate,  Peoples’ Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar have frowned at the travel ban placed on Nigerian citizens by the US government.

Pelosi condemned the decision made by President Donald Trump to include Nigeria, Eritrea, Sudan, Tanzania, Kyrgyzstan, and Myanmar on the travel ban list.  According to her, such list contravenes the American values and poses threat to the US’ security as well as the rule of law in the US.

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She reacted to the travel ban list, which Nairametrics had earlier reported, through her Twitter handle, stating that, “The Trump Admin’s expansion of its un-American travel ban is a threat to our security, our values and the rule of law.

“Barring more than 350 million people from predominantly African countries from travelling to the US, this rule is discrimination disguised as policy.”

Pelosi to move against ban list: Pelosi, who is a member of the Democrats Party (opposition party to Trump’s Republican party), said the House would move against the ban list, which has been termed as religious discrimination because it targets countries with large Muslim population.

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In her tweet, Pelosi stated that, “In the coming weeks, the House will bring the NO BAN Act to the Floor to prohibit religious discrimination in our immigration system and limit the President’s ability to impose such biased and bigoted restrictions.”

Is Trump punishing Nigerians because of Buhari? The former Presidential aspirant, Atiku Abubakar, has cautioned President Trump against punishing Nigerians for the failure of President Muhammadu Buhari.

[READ MORE: US finally include Nigeria in travel ban list)

Note that reasons for the travel ban list were due to the failure of Nigeria and other banned countries to meet the security and information-sharing standard of the US. Also, while the ban on visas stops immigration of Nigerians to the US, it doesn’t stop the government officials from travelling to the US.

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Reacting to the travel ban list, Atiku wrote on Twitter, “While I understand the reasons given by the Trump administration (the failure of the @MBuhari led administration to share information and to address issues of terrorism), the ban does not take into account the pro-American sentiments of the Nigerian public.

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“…and the solidarity previous Nigerian administrations have had with the United States. I urge the government of President @realDonaldTrump to consider the history of US-Nigerian relationships.”

Atiku added in another tweet that, “Nigerians love the United States and have been a major force for the positive development of that great nation: 77% of all Black doctors in the United States are Nigerians. Nigerians are also the most educated immigrant community in America bar none.”

Target government, not Nigerians: With the impact Nigerians play in war-coalition with the US and the development of US, Atiku said Nigerians should not be targeted, rather, the ban should be placed on government tor failing to perform their duties.

“The current Nigerian administration may have its deficiencies and deep faults, but the Nigeria people ought not to be punished for their inefficiencies.

“Once again, I call on President @realDonaldTrump to consider adopting measures that individually target those in government who have failed in their duties, rather than target the entire Nigerian population,” Atiku suggested in his Tweet.

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However, the Presidency, through the Special Adviser to the President on Media & Publicity, Femi Adesina, has reacted to the development. It described the move as a temporary restriction placed on Nigeria and five others by the US’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which will be effected on 21st February 2020. According to Adesina, the suspension does not apply to other U.S visas such as those for official, business, tourism and student travel.

He said, “The DHS states the suspension of “immigrant visas” became necessary following a review and update of the methodology (performance metrics) adopted by the U.S Government to assess compliance of certain security criteria by foreign governments.

Nigeria remains committed to maintaining productive relations with the United States and its international allies especially on matters of global security. Accordingly, President Muhammadu Buhari has established a committee, to be chaired by the Hon. Minister of Interior, to study and address the updated U.S. requirements. The committee will work with the U.S Government, INTERPOL and other stakeholders to ensure all updates are properly implemented.”

 Background: The ban on Nigeria comes two years after Nigeria received twice as many immigration visas from the United States compared to other countries that also made the list – Eritrea, Sudan, Tanzania, Kyrgyzstan, and Myanmar. Over 8,000 immigration visas were given to Nigerians, while 2,000 were issued to Sudanese nationals, 290 to Tanzanians, and just 31 to Eritreans.

US Travel Ban on Nigerians: Buhari says it’s mere speculation

Why the US banned Nigeria, others: The list is made up of countries that failed to meet US security and information-sharing standards.

According to the acting Homeland Security Secretary, Chad Wolf, “These countries, for the most part, want to be helpful but for a variety of different reasons simply failed to meet those minimum requirements that we laid out.” Nairametrics had earlier reported the planned ban.

The ban blocks these countries from obtaining certain types of visas including immigration. This rule out the issuance of visas that can lead to permanent residency for citizens of the listed countries. The travel ban list was first introduced by President Trump in 2017 but it affects countries with Muslim majorities mostly.

Nigeria and Eritrea’s population account for 50% of Muslims while Kyrgyzstan and Sudan have large Muslim majorities, and Tanzania also has a sizable Muslim community. Although in 2017, President Trump also restricted citizens of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen, Venezuela, and North Korea.

[READ MORE: How Coronavirus would affect crude oil demand negatively)

The ban won’t affect non-immigrant visas given to people for temporary stays, including visitors, those doing business or people seeking medical treatment – would not be impacted by the new rules. Also, students are exempted as well as those with “significant contacts” in the US.

Olalekan is a certified media practitioner from the Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ). In the era of media convergence, Olalekan is a valuable asset, with ability to curate and broadcast news. His zeal to write was developed out of passion to shape people’s thought and opinion; serving as a guideline for their daily lives. Contact for tips: fakoyejo.olalekan@nairametrics.com.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Stanley

    February 2, 2020 at 2:49 pm

    Our leaders and aspiring leaders are so pitifully slavish in their mentality and actions. How can they be literary begging the US to open its doors to Nigerians, when they should be busy working to fix the economy and security situation. If our leaders, both past and present had done their jobs well, people wouldn’t be so desperate to immigrate to the US for better quality lives. This should be a wake up call for our leaders to rise up to the occasion and invest every effort and resources to truly improve the economic situation of Nigerians, but rather they are scampering about looking for how to please America, instead of looking to please Nigerians.

  2. bfree

    April 22, 2020 at 4:59 am

    I’m an American and though I don’t like much of anything that President Trump introduces, I’m all fie this ban. Many foreigners, including Nigerians, believe they have some devine right to an American dream though they had very little to do with the shaping and development of our country. I doubt if Nigerians would like Americans immigrating there with similar beliefs to some unnatural right. Population experts say that Nigeria’s population will be greater than the US by 2047. Do you think we want you people over here? No, we don’t.

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Central banks digital currencies pose a threat against the U.S dollar

In general, digital currencies could weaken the power of U.S. sanctions and the ability of the U.S. Treasury to watch illicit financial flows.

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Central banks digital currencies pose a threat against the U.S dollar.

A new report by America’s biggest bank, JP Morgan Chase, said the U.S dollar is being faced with a major threat as many  central banks’ digital currencies continue to gain traction.

Analysts, including Josh Younger, the head of U.S. interest-rate derivatives strategy and Michael Feroli, the chief U.S. economist, wrote in a report saying this:

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“There is no country with more to lose from the disruptive potential of digital currency than the United States.

This revolves primarily around U.S. dollar hegemony. Issuing the global reserve currency and the medium of exchange for international trade in commodities, goods, and services convey immense advantages.” 

Aditi Kumar and Eric Rosenbach also recently penned an opinion piece for Foreign Affairs in which they noted that “Just recently, America’s arch-rival China became the first major economy to carry a real test of a national digital currency.”

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(READ MORE: Why the strong dollar is giving Nigeria headache)

In general, electronic currencies could weaken the power of U.S. sanctions and the ability of the U.S. Treasury to watch illicit financial flows. A digital Chinese currency (yuan) combined with China’s developed electronic payment systems may give China more future influence than it ever bargained for.  

What Nigerians should know about Digital currencies

A digital currency is a cash balance recorded electronically on a store value card or other physical devices, which could someday replace the physical notes of the naira, for instance.

Digital currencies can be decentralized, that is where the control over the cash supply can come from diverse sources. Digital  currencies can also be centralized, where there is a midway point of control over cash supply, just like the way central banks work.

Central banks digital currencies pose a threat against the U.S dollar.

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Although JP Morgan does not see the U.S dollar being overthrown as the world’s reserve currency anytime soon, experts warned that the U.S dollar dominance could weaken. This is because its processing trade settlement and the SWIFT system could make it more vulnerable.

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The American bank continued by saying:

“Offering a cross-border payment solution built on top of a digital dollar would, particularly if designed to be minimally disruptive to the structure of the domestic financial system, be a very modest investment to protect a key means to project power in the global economy,

“For high-income countries and the U.S. in particular, digital currency is an exercise in geopolitical risk management.” 

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said months ago that the Federal Reserve was taking a critical view on the issues regarding a digital currency.

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Dollar gains against major currencies

U.S dollar stood firm against major currencies on Monday as fears over rising tensions between America and China over Beijing’s plans to begin

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The US dollar remains king, U.S dollar gains against major currencies, America threatens China with sanctions.

The U.S dollar was up on Monday morning during London’s trading session after protests in Hong Kong yesterday escalated U.S-China tensions.

US dollar stood firm against major currencies on Monday as fears over rising tensions between America and China heightened.

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The American Dollar Index that monitors the U.S dollar against a basket of other major currencies was slightly up 0.02% to 99.945 by 11.10 am Nigerian local time.

What it means: Nigerians hoping to meet a foreign exchange payment obligation, transactions via the dollar to countries like Europe, Japan, would have the need to pay fewer dollars to fulfill such transactions.

(READ MORE:Reports: China may defer loans owed by Nigeria and others)

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Meanwhile, the friendship between the Americans and Chinese has soured lately since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. US President Trump and President Jinping of China have traded words against each other issues surrounding COVID-19, including accusations of lack of transparency and cover-ups. 

 

American Dollar remains king as stimulus fails to stop global financial market panic,Demand for “Inflow dollars” drive exchange rate to as high as $N420/$1 compared to “Cash dollars”, U.S dollar drops against major currencies, tension rises between America and China, U.S dollar gains against major currencies, America threatens China with sanctions.

Consequently, the U.S. Commerce Department added 33 Chinese businesses to a blacklist on Friday, and some U.S. Senators proposed sanctions on those businesses.

“The biggest concern is the tension between the United States and China, things were already bad, and it is likely to get worse because of the Hong Kong security law. This supports risk-off trades, which is positive for the dollar and the yen,” Tekuya Kanda, the general manager of research at Gaitame.com Research Institute, told Reuters.

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Air Peace to evacuate stranded Indians from Lagos to Kerala

A list of the passengers to be attended to has already been given and the flight shall depart Lagos on May 30, 2020, to Cochin Airport, Kerala.

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Air Peace signs deal with Brazillian aerospace company , Air Peace suspends flight operations over COVID-19

The management of Air Peace Nigeria has been contacted by the Indian High Commission in Nigeria to undertake the evacuation of stranded Indian nationals to Kerala, India. This was disclosed by the airline via its Twitter handle.

The airline explained that a list of passengers that would be attended to have been released and it has started reaching out to the Indians on Saturday.

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It stated, “A list of the passengers to be attended to has already been given to us and we have commenced reaching out to them. The flight shall depart Lagos on May 30, 2020, to Cochin Airport, Kerala.”

The flight is not free anyway. According to the airline, payments are expected immediately and they are Economy is $1.300 and Business class is tag $1,700. “You are equally allowed to pay in Naira at N460/$,” it added.

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However, some Indians in Nigeria has reacted with mixed feelings to the development on Twitter. While some were ready to join the flight back home, others called for the refund of ticket fare booked a week ago.

READ ALSO: Hope rises as Emefiele set to meet MTN, 4 banks today.

For instance, Jayant Khamesra requested for the refund ticket fare of N568, 100, which he paid for a flight from Lagos to Delhi.

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He said, “Please refund ticket fare P47812 LAGOS to DELHI. No show by Air Peace and it is been 1 week now, there has been no refund or confirmation of the same. Reference ALHN79 amount N568,100. I am sure a good world-class carrier like Air Peace won’t delay refunds purposely. Please act fast.

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